ALERT! More info
Translink Buzzer Blog

Category: Everything Evergreen

Evergreen Extension off to a strong start!

Mark I on the Evergreen
The Evergreen Extension to the Millennium Line leading out to Port Moody has been in operation since December 2, 2016.

This extension has meant a faster and more direct route for thousands of riders a day plus better connections for West Coast Express riders.

We are extremely happy to report that after only three months of service, the Evergreen Extension is attracting 30,000 daily boardings!

DID YOU KNOW??
In January 2017, more than 60 per cent of all weekend transit journeys
in the Tri-Cities were on the Evergreen Extension!

Because most of the growth and development in Tri-Cities today is happening near SkyTrain stations, transit becomes a key factor for new residents deciding where they live and work.

In the coming months and years, we anticipate many new residents, as well as bus and car users, will begin to take SkyTrain as they see the benefits of commuting by an interconnected rapid transit service.

Statistics from the first two months:

  • Approximately 30,000 trips were taken on an average weekday in January on Evergreen Extension.
    • By comparison, the 97 B-Line, which largely covered the same route before it was discontinued, had only 10,000 boardings per weekday.
  • 150,000 people tried the Evergreen extension during first eight weeks of operation, the equivalent of every resident of Coquitlam trying the line once.
  • 46% of weekday transit boardings in the Tri Cities happen on the Evergreen Extension, while that number jumps to 60% on weekends.
  • 20% of Evergreen extension trips start and end within the Tri Cities.

For more information, you can see more information on the Evergreen ridership here.

Do you travel on the Evergreen Extension?
Check out our latest Evergreen Explorer blog about grabbing a cup of joe on your commute!

Author: Adrienne Coling

TransLink 2016: A year in review

Squared
Another trip around the sun. 2016 – what a year! It’s been a busy and productive 366 (leap year) days for TransLink.

Let’s take a look back at 2016 in the world of Metro Vancouver transit!

New CEO.

In the spring, we welcomed new CEO, Kevin Desmond. Kevin came to TransLink from King County Metro Transit that serves the Seattle area.

Kevin jumped in with both feet to lead the charge of a very full and important year while emphasizing our customers’ needs, transparency and excellent service.

We’re so happy to have him at the helm!

Compass.

This word was on everyone’s lips this year!

Compass Card tap outAfter a roll out that started with Upass users then West Coast Express, the general public adopted Compass with Monthly Passes at the beginning of this year.

Then, on April 4, 2016, the fare gates closed requiring riders to tap in on buses and in and out at all gates to pay their fare.

With Compass, you can travel seamlessly across the TransLink transit network with one card! Compass also allows us to gather important data on peak periods, bus route ridership and more – helping us better plan and run the transit network.

Expo ’86.

May 2nd marked the 30th anniversary of Expo ’86 – the 1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication held on the north shore of False Creek.

This was North America’s largest World’s Fair and a monumental event for Vancouver that left a lasting legacy – our SkyTrain system starting with none other than the Expo Line!

SkyTrain started regular service on January 3, 1986.

100 years of the Buzzer. 

Happy birthday, Buzzer! The print Buzzer hit a major milestone anniversary of 100 years!

This free, on-transit publication began on June 2, 1916 without a name. That soon changed and it has been delivering informative, fun and interesting transit and community related tidbits to the riders of the transit system ever since.

You can pick yours up on your ride or download here.

Federal funding.

PM Justin Trudeau made some lifelong transit friends when he announced more than $900 million will be invested – by the Government of Canada, British Columbia and municipalities – in public transit projects across the province.

This important funding promise allowed the Metro Vancouver Mayors’ Council to present Phase One of the 10-Year Vision for approval. But we’ll get to that soon enough!

LTE connectivity.

Rogers and Fido customers were treated to not one but two connectivity projects allowing riders to use their mobile devices.

In July, the Dunsmuir tunnel downtown Vancouver was connected and in November, the Edmonds tunnel followed suit!

Up next? We will continue to work with Rogers to build out wireless coverage along the Evergreen Extension, Columbia Station and tunnel and in New Westminster.

#Compass1Million.

This summer we hit one million active Compass Cards.

That means that a million riders across Metro Vancouver embraced the switch to Compass and were tap, tap, tapping their way to and from school, home, work and more!

With such great news, we had to celebrate with a fun contest to thank you for using Compass!

Mark IIIs.

These beautiful new SkyTrain cars were the hit of the summer! Especially because the A/C is just oh, so cool!

Press tourThese cars rode across country – on flatbeds – to reach out region.

Each 4-car set is fully articulated (you can walk from one end of the train to the other), has more room for standing passengers, wheelchairs, bikes, strollers and riders with luggage plus, they are more environmentally efficient!

Transit riders and enthusiasts eagerly awaited the first trip on August 18th and our Mark III VIPs got a front seat for the journey!

SkyTrain Wedding.

Something old, something new, something borrowed something… transit? Hey, whatever floats your SeaBus!Congratulations Nathaly and Jeff!

Jeff and Nathaly met on Canada Line and it was their dream to get married on transit.

Enter a white (naturally) Mark II SkyTrain, a full band, wedding guests and one interloping Buzzer blog writer and you’ve got a SkyTrain wedding!

It was a distinct pleasure to document this lovely couple’s big day aboard our beloved SkyTrain at Stadium–Chinatown Station.

I Love Transit Week.

I love transit week is a time for enthusiasts of all ages can say loud and proud, “I LOVE TRANSIT!”

Poems, colouring contests, a special Buzzer, HTC opening tour, kids camp and more – we felt the transit love from riders of all ages at a variety of events.

Interested in participating in next year’s festivities? Keep your eyes peeled for rumblings on the Buzzer blog in spring!

Hamilton Transit Centre.

In one September weekend we said goodbye to North Vancouver Transit Centre and hello to the brand new HTC building in Richmond! HTC

Did you notice? If not, that’s a good thing! CMBC made the seamless transition from one TC to the other and got your buses on the road from their no locale A.S.A.P.

Hamilton Transit Centre has capacity for 300 forty-foot buses, including up to 80 community shuttle buses and 150 Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fuelled buses.

HTC performs three functions: dispatch, fuel and wash service as well as maintenance for buses servicing the Richmond, New Westminster, Burnaby and Vancouver areas.

Pattullo.

Opened in 1937, this bridge is one of the busiest Fraser crossings in the region. So, it’s unsurprising that while we go ahead with plans to build a new bridge, this ol’ girl needs some safety upgrades in the interim.

We know the evening and weekend closures impacted a lot of drivers and we appreciate your patience as we rehabilitated the crossing to ensure its safety for all.

Repairs included:

  • milling off the asphalt surfacing from the deck
  • removing all deck concrete down to the top layer of rebar
  • repairing concrete delamination and cleaning or replacing rebar
  • repaving the deck area with a concrete overlay

Crews managed to finish early allowing for goods and people to move freely over the Pattullo Bridge once again .

CUTA.

CUTA is the Canadian Urban Transit Association and this year’s Fall Conference and Transit Show happened right here in Metro Vancouver on November 5-9.

This year’s theme was Inspiring Sustainable Change with a variety of seminars and speakers discussing today’s demands, tomorrow’s challenges and the possibilities for transit in our country and around the world.

TransLink had many speakers engaging with experts and transit enthusiasts from around the globe. Including CMBC’s Derek Stewart who spoke about the impact of climate change to transit agencies.

New Westminster upgrades.

We are upgrading SkyTrain Stations across the rapid transit network.

New Westminster was one of them. I say was because the work is done! On November 21, we officially completed and opened the overhauled station for riders to use and enjoy!

The completed upgrades at New Westminster Station include:

  • A new elevator and escalators to improve access for customers with disabilities
  • Improved lighting throughout the station
  • Glass panels to replace the mesh screens and improve station visibility from street level
  • Better integration with the surrounding community to make it easier to connect to and from the SkyTrain system
  • New public art that improves the experience of riders

10-year vision.

Our region is growing and along with that comes greater need for public transit.640x194_buzzer_blog-01

The Mayors’ Council 10-year Vision Phase One was approved by the TransLink board and council on November 23.

Along with the federal and provincial funding promised in June, municipalities will pitch in their share with TransLink for some much needed transit upgrades and projects.

Phase One improvements in 2017, 2018, and 2019 include:

  • 10% increase in bus service
  • 15% increase in HandyDART service
  • 20% increase in rail service
  • New or expanded transit services for neighbourhoods that currently have few or no transit options today
  • Safer walking and cycling routes
  • Reduced traffic congestion by fixing bottlenecks on major roads

Metro Vancouver residents will start to see added service in the new year with much more to come in the coming months and years!

Evergreen.

Sometimes, it IS easy being green! EmeansGo

On December 2, the Millennium Line Evergreen Extension opened to great excitement despite the rainy weather!

The community celebration at Coquitlam Central Station ran all day with riders eagerly awaiting the first official ride on Evergreen.

With this extension, TransLink has the longest, automated, driverless rapid transit system in the world!

Twitter Heroes.

If you’ve ever called 604-953-3333 or tweeted @TransLink, you’ve interacted with CI (Customer Information).

This crew works tirelessly to help keep riders informed on specific routes, transit timings, disruptions, detours and all things transit related!

Started in 2010 as a pilot project, to date our followers have reached over 135,000 people and CI has sent out 295,039 tweets!

A big thank you to these awesome people who keep us moving!

Well, that about wraps it up. We can’t wait for what 2017 will hold for our region and transit!

Author: Adrienne Coling

The December 2016 issue of the Buzzer is now on the system

Happy holidays! bordered The December 2016 print Buzzer is now on the system.

Much of this issue is dedicated to Winter Service Changes.

This sheet change is especially important because of the newly opened Evergreen Extension.

Be sure to check out Bus Route Buzz for more information about changes to service around the Tri-Cities.

Remember! Service Changes begin Monday, December 19, 2016.

Also in this issue we introduce our beautiful new SkyTrain extension!!

As always, we have our favourites – Contest Corner, Back Issues and Coming Events!

Happy reading! Pick it up today on the bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express or you can download it here.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Ivan Chan Photography explores the Evergreen Extension

Thanks to Ivan Chan Photography for all the great photos in this post!

Thanks to Ivan Chan Photography for all the great photos in this post!

The Buzzer blog gladly receives emails from readers and transit riders regarding everything from blog suggestions to cool transit stories; operator kudos to poetry and photography!

Ivan Chan is a self employed photographer and videographer who often works in real estate photography. He’s also a transit fan who recently took some awesome photographs of the newly opened Evergreen Extension!

In these photos, Ivan focuses on architecture, depicting the form and function incorporated in the beauty of these brand new SkyTrain stations.

Ivan agreed to a little one-on-one so we could learn a little more about this transit shutterbug.

What made you get interested in taking photographs?

To me, I feel taking photos conveys a story or message in itself, which is why people tend to say photos are worth a thousand words. Photos are a way of conveying meanings and memories in time. In the future, when I look back at an older photo, it reminds me of this event or that feeling.

What kind of images do you like to capture?

I like to take photos of random things like signage, buildings, interior and exterior architectural design, transportation related shots, scenery and landscape.

What made you document the new Evergreen Extension and its stations?

Being focused on real estate photography and my interest in transportation projects, I decided to bring this concept and photo taking technique and showcasing architectural features of the new Evergreen Line stations.

What’s your favourite part of the Evergreen Extension?

My favourite part is the stunning view of the landscape and scenery from Burquitlam Station and the view from the line running between Burquitlam Station and Lougheed Town Centre Station. One can look far away into the Metrotown direction, New Westminster city area and the SFU area.

How do you hope people will react to your transit photos?

In a way, I hope to educate the public and first time transit users, including tourists, on how transit stations look like, how to navigate or use the photos as a wayfinding tool around the stations and what to expect of in terms of layout so they are better prepared in their own route planning.

Are you a transit fan?

Ironically, although I drive most of the time, I am still a transit fan. I am inspired by the technology that runs behind the Skytrain system and I like using train systems. When I went to school many years ago at UBC, taking the bus was my favourite thing! My favourite mode of transit transportation would be the rapid rail transit/SkyTrain because it is dedicated and separated from traffic. There will never be slow downs or congestion to deal with and fewer stops making the ride much, much less stressful and more efficient, fast and reliable.

Enjoy just a few of Ivan’s Evergreen shots:

Thank you to Ivan and Ivan Chan Photography for reaching out and sharing these great images with us all!

Do you have fun stories, photos or other interesting transit tidbits to share with the Buzzer blog team?
Have at it! Email us at thebuzzer@translink.ca.

Author: Adrienne Coling

You are invited to Everything Evergreen on December 2 at Coquitlam Central Station!

poster
Evergreen means go on December 2 and that is cause for some major celebrating!

Come out to Coquitlam Central Station on the Evergreen Extension this Friday from 10:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m. for a huge community celebration!

TransLink, along with our partners and local community groups are hosting a day of family-friendly fun.

I am immensely proud of the project team, our partners and all our staff across the enterprise who have worked tirelessly to see this project through. We now have the longest, driverless, automated rapid-transit system in the world. I am looking forward to seeing everyone on opening day. Come experience the new Evergreen Extension first-hand.”

– Kevin Desmond, TransLink CEO

There will be lots activities including: a LEGO-building station, ukulele lessons and kids’ craft as well as a stage at Coquitlam Central Station hosting a variety of talented community music groups to entertain all ages.

There are even whispers that the big guy in red might stop by in the early evening at Coquitlam Central Station!

We’re so thankful for the community partners who will be there supporting this great day. Look out for these organizations during the celebrations:

Coquitlam Centre

Coquitlam Express Junior Hockey Club

The Coquitlam Heritage Society

Coquitlam Public Library

Coquitlam Ukulele Tiny Instruments Enthusiasts Circle

Evergreen Cultural Centre

HUB Cycling

ICBC

Lougheed Town Centre

Save on Foods – Pinetree Store and Cameron Store

Port Moody Heritage Society

SHARE Family & Community Services

The Transit Museum Society of Vancouver

Bricks 4 Kidz

The first train rides on the Evergreen Extension start at 12 p.m. 

Even more entertainment will begin at the other Evergreen stations starting at 4 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.

You can find out more information of the day’s events this week right here on the Buzzer blog, our social channels and at translink.ca/evergreen.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Everything Evergreen: This bus is coming to a community near you!

TRL16-014-Static-Ad_m.translink-banner_640x194_CLOCK

Outreach Bus (2)
We are over the moon excited that the Evergreen Extension will be opening on December 2, 2016!

However, we do understand that this changes transit options for many of our customers.

To help prepare everyone for the opening, this community engagement bus will be touring the Tri-Cities and getting riders on board and informed about new or changed bus routes, trip planning and more!

Outreach teams will be on and around the bus to answer any questions you have about the SkyTrain extension, stations, bus route changes and other transit related queries for your specific community.

The first trip is this Saturday, November 26 in Coquitlam during the Lights at Lafarge festival.

Come for the food, face painting and fireworks. Stay for the transit tips and Evergreen Extension bus awesomeness.

Take a look inside!

TransLink is also sponsoring a shuttle bus to help get you to this event. You can view the shuttle schedule here.

Keep your eyes peeled for this bus at more community events in and around the Tri-Cities as we prepare for the opening of the Evergreen Extension.

Spot the bus? Let us know by snapping a pic with our team and tweet us @TransLink!

Author: Adrienne Coling

Welcome to the Evergreen Extension! A sneak peek at Moody Centre Station (Photos)

TRL16-014-Static-Ad_m.translink-banner_640x194_GLOBE

MoodyCentreStation1
As you may have heard around town, a teensy bit of news that was shared recently… the Evergreen Extension is opening December 2, 2016!!

The announcement was made at Moody Centre Station and we couldn’t resist taking a little tour ourselves to see more of one of the brand new stations.

Of course we took a few photos to share with our lovely Buzzer blog readers.

Enjoy!!

And just for fun, check out a quick timelapse from Moody Centre Station into the tunnel towards Burquitlam Station!

Stay tuned!

We will continue to share fun videos and pictures of the Evergreen Extension across our social channels in preparation for its opening in December.

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

Author: Adrienne Coling

Evergreen means GO! Exploring the Evergreen Extension with your help

TRL16-014-Static-Ad_m.translink-banner_640x194_GLOBE

Burquitlam Station

Burquitlam Station

Do you live, work or play around the new Evergreen Extension?

You do? That’s great!

Not only will you have more efficient options to connect with the rest of the Metro Vancouver transit network starting December 2, but you’ll also be able to help us out with a fun new Buzzer blog series!

We’re looking for suggestions from Tri-Cities residents and riders like you to help us explore the Evergreen Extension.

From favourite sushi joints to juice bars; coffee spots to the best parks and recreational activities.

We will feature your suggestions right here on the blog and share across our other social channels in preparation for the opening of Evergreen.

Comment below or email us with the subject line “Evergreen Explorer” to tell us where we should go along the Evergreen Extension to highlight these great communities!

Author: Adrienne Coling

First responders prepare for the opening of the Evergreen Extension

Training exercise for Coquitlam Fire at Lafarge Lake in June 2016

Training exercise for Coquitlam Fire Rescue at Lafarge Lake in June 2016

With the new extension to our SkyTrain network, there are many “behind the scenes” elements being tested and prepared.

A vital part of our preparation for the opening of Evergreen involves comprehensive emergency training with first responders.

Emergency preparedness training is conducted routinely throughout our transit system to ensure the highest safety standards are maintained and continuously improve responses.

Residents and riders in the Tri-Cities can expect to see some emergency training along the Evergreen Extension in the coming weeks.

On November 12, 19 and 26 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. emergency personnel in the Northeast sector will be running evacuation and rescue exercises with emergency vehicles, bus shuttle scenarios, testing equipment, smoke and fire alarms as well as ventilation fans at Inlet Centre and Moody Centre Stations and both the north and south portals of the tunnel.

The training will be a veritable who’s who of emergency response teams! Of course, we will have members of BCRTC, CMBC and Transit Police as well as Coquitlam Fire Rescue, Port Moody Fire Rescue, BC Emergency Health Services and Port Moody Police.

Due to the training, some road closures around the stations will be required, but regular SkyTrain service will not be affected on these days.

Remember! This training will look real but these are not real incidents.

See what else is happening with the Evergreen Extension  at translink.ca/Evergreen.

Author: Adrienne Coling

(Video) Evergreen Extension is opening December 2, 2016

TRL16-014-Static-Ad_m.translink-banner_640x194_GLOBEMoodyCentreStation2
Are you ready for this??

MoodyCentreStation1

Moody Centre Station

The Evergreen Extension to the Millennium Line is opening December 2, 2016!

That’s right!

We’re so excited that our riders across the Tri-Cities will soon have more frequent transit options and be able to seamlessly connect to the Metro Vancouver transit network!

It’s also an important milestone for the entire system because once Evergreen opens, SkyTrain will be the longest, fully automated, driverless rapid transit system in the world!

Now that construction has finished, TransLink will take control over the operation of everything Evergreen.

BurquitlamStation3

Burquitlam Station art

Right now, we’re focused on ensuring a smooth transition for our customers and we continue to get ready behind the scenes. On the customer end, you will start seeing platform posters and ads, transit advertising, digital, newspaper and radio ads, plus a video that will play on the system and in the media.

To do that, we are testing the extension, planning the grand opening and preparing for the extensive bus integration that will take place after Evergreen opens.

We know you have tons of questions about bus service changes and we will have all that info for you later this month once the changes are finalized.

So, be sure to stay tuned to our social channels including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and right here on the Buzzer blog!

Here are some resources for you leading up to, and after, the opening:

  • Starting on November 28, you can head to our Trip Planner to help you map out your route with new travel information.
  • If you want to use Trip Planner, be sure to choose the specific date on which you want to travel.
  • First train departs at 12p.m. on December 2 and a community celebration is planned at Coquitlam Centre – watch the blog for details soon!
  • Bus service changes will begin to take effect on December 19.
  • From November 21 to December 22, you’ll see our outreach teams all across the system. These wonderful people are virtual Evergreen encyclopedias and can answer your questions and help riders understand how the bus changes affect their transit trips.

You can learn more by visiting translink.ca/evergreen for more information.

 

For more information about bus travel once the Evergreen Extension opens, head to translink.ca/servicechanges on November 28.


TransLink @TransLink


 Author: Adrienne Coling

SkyTrain Change is a comin’! Are you ready for October 22nd?

Change can be hard, but the good news is, it doesn’t have to be! We’ve got everything you need to help you on your way on October 22nd, and beyond!

If you haven’t yet heard, on October 22nd, 2016 the way you ride SkyTrain may be changing. In advance of the Evergreen Extension opening later this year, the operating pattern of the SkyTrain network will be different than what you’ve become accustomed to. Arguably, the biggest change in the operating pattern will take place at Lougheed Town Centre Station and Production Way – University Station.

Is Lougheed Town Centre Station part of your commute? Our friends in wayfinding have created this visual to help you understand what to expect come October 22nd.

October 22nd SkyTrain Pattern Changes

Are you a Production Way – University Station regular? Here’s how the upcoming October 22nd change may affect your SkyTrain commute.

October 22nd SkyTrain Pattern Changes

Still have questions? Check out our Facebook Livestream with Ian Fisher, outlining all of the changes.

For more information on the operating pattern,
visit translink.ca/skytrainchanges.

You can also check out our live streams on Facebook and Periscope!

And one more time — the key points of the change that may impact you are summarized below:

New operating pattern – October 22nd:

o The Expo Line will now have two branches.

  • One route will continue to travel between Waterfront and King George stations.
  • A second Expo Line route will run between Waterfront and Production Way–University stations.

o The Millennium Line will no longer travel to/from Waterfront Station. Instead, it will
now run between VCC–Clark and Lougheed Stations.

Transfer points:

You will be able to transfer between the Millennium and Expo lines at three places:

o Commercial–Broadway Station
o Lougheed Town Centre Station
o Production Way–University Station

Please note: You will no longer be able to transfer to or from the Millennium Line at Columbia Station or Waterfront Station.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

#SkyTrainChanges Q&A with Ian Fisher

535x367_HPR-01

In case you missed our announcement earlier this week — big changes are coming to the way you ride SkyTrain! On October 22nd, 2016 the operating pattern of the SkyTrain network will change. We took some time today with Ian Fisher, Manager, Operations Planning to get an indepth look at what the new SkyTrain changes mean and how they will change the way we ride.

For more information on the operating pattern,
visit translink.ca/skytrainchanges.

You can also check out our live streams on Facebook and Periscope!

The key points of the change that may impact you are summarized below:

New operating pattern:

o The Expo Line will now have two branches.

  • One route will continue to travel between Waterfront and King George stations.
  • A second Expo Line route will run between Waterfront and Production Way–University stations.

o The Millennium Line will no longer travel to/from Waterfront Station. Instead, it will
now run between VCC–Clark and Lougheed Stations.

Transfer points:

You will be able to transfer between the Millennium and Expo lines at three places:

o Commercial–Broadway Station
o Lougheed Town Centre Station
o Production Way–University Station

Please note: You will no longer be able to transfer to or from the Millennium Line at Columbia Station or Waterfront Station.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

Everything Evergreen: New SkyTrain operating pattern for Expo and Millennium Lines


Evergreen is coming!!

To prepare for the Millennium Line’s extension opening by Christmas, we need to get all of our riders ready for a seamless transition.

With that in mind, we are changing the operating pattern of the SkyTrain network on October 22, 2016.

For many of you, these changes won’t affect your daily commute, but this is still a big change for the transit network.

New operating pattern:

o The Expo Line will now have two branches.

  • One route will continue to travel between Waterfront and King George stations.
  • A second Expo Line route will run between Waterfront and Production Way–University stations.

o The Millennium Line will no longer travel to/from Waterfront Station. Instead, it will
now run between VCC–Clark and Lougheed Stations.

Transfer points:

You will be able to transfer between the Millennium and Expo lines at three places:

o Commercial–Broadway Station
o Lougheed Town Centre Station
o Production Way–University Station

Please note: You will no longer be able to transfer to or from the Millennium Line at Columbia Station or Waterfront Station.

For more information on the operating pattern,
visit translink.ca/skytrainchanges.

Author: Adrienne Coling